Rainy Days at Disneylandby Megan Walker, contributing writer
I'm from Portland, Oregon, so trust me when I say: I know rain. Where I live, the weather isn't an excuse to stay inside and watch Netflix all day, if you don't go out when it's raining, you'd rarely go out. So, when I visit the Disneyland Resort, and it rains, I'm usually both surprised by the lack of crowds, and happy at the prospect of a successful day in the parks.
If the forecast calls for a rainy day at Disneyland, you can generally expect lower crowds and, therefore, lower wait times. Most Annual Passholders (locals, mainly) won't waste their time in the rain when they have hundreds of other sunny days to enjoy the parks, and tourists will sometimes use the chance to enjoy other areas of the resort or around Southern California where they can stay dry.
If you are ready to brave the rain, it is still possible to have a fun day at Disneyland.
What to Wear
If you're someone like me, from a colder state than California, you'll probably be comfortable wearing shorts in a 65-70 degree rainy day. If you're a native Californian, or from a warmer state, you might prefer to be bundled up. Whatever you will be most comfortable in for a rainy day is what will be perfect for you. You're probably wondering: OK but how do I keep myself dry? It's easy–forget any fashion sense you might have and give in to the glorious invention that is the poncho. If the weather forecast calls for rain during your trip, go to the Dollar Store or your local market and pick up a cheap poncho. They might not be the most stylish item you can find, but it will get the job done. If you forget one, stores throughout the resort do carry ponchos and umbrellas (when it rains, they tend to be positioned closer to the doors). You also might want to bring an extra pair of dry socks, because there is nothing worse than squishing around in your shoes all day.
What to Do
The crowds will be small, the wait times will be low, you can do whatever you want. Some of the attractions with outside track systems will close in the rain for safety concerns, but there are a lot of other options. If you get tired of walking around in the rain however, there is plenty to enjoy under cover as well. Go watch some of the classic Mickey Mouse shorts in the Main Street Cinema, explore the galaxy in Star Wars Launch Bay, pretend you're in the tropics for a while in The Enchanted Tiki Room, go see Mickey and the Magical Map, do some shopping, or find a nice spot under cover and people-watch. If you're across the way at Disney California Adventure, go see the new Frozen show at the Hyperion Theater; explore the Animation Building and watch the animated segments on the big screens in the lobby, learn how to draw your favorite character, or spend some time in Beast's library; or get in line at the new Soarin'. Bottom line, there are plenty of things to do, rain or shine.
Throw Caution to the Wind
You're already wet so what's a little more water? If you usually avoid rides like Pirates of the Caribbean, Jungle Cruise, Splash Mountain, or Grizzly River Rapids in order to avoid getting wet, now is the perfect chance to capitalize on all those missed opportunities. I rarely go on Splash Mountain anymore because I just don't enjoy soggy clothes while walking around Disneyland. However, in the rain, anything goes.
A Word of Warning
I will offer one bit of advice and that is to be very careful in the rain at Disneyland. I have seen many slip, slide, and fall in the rain on the variety of Disneyland pavements while trying to enjoy the park, which can absolutely ruin your day. So wear sensible shoes with a good grip, and just be careful.
At the end of the day, Disneyland is the "Happiest Place on Earth!" So when the weather changes, and the chance of a rainy day increases, don't be afraid to brave the elements. Just grab a Mickey umbrella and enjoy!